|Mural on building in Grayling|
After returning from a four day birding trip in Vermont with Dave Eberly and Gary Becker, Sharon and I headed out to Michigan to take the Kirtland's Warbler tour and then drove up to Mackinaw Island on Lake Huron. We made the 11.5 hour drive in one day and spent the evening in Grayling. At 7AM the next day we met the Forest Service officer who gave us a 15 minute presentation about the warbler and it's habitat requirements.
We then made the 15 minute drive to a young Jack Pine stand. As soon as we got out of the car we could hear the warbler singing away. We walked into the stand about 100 yards and started searching. The bird was singing about 50 fifty feet from our group but we just could not find the bird because he was singing from a low perch. Fortunately, Kirtland's Warbler are known to sing constantly during breeding season. After more searching we finally were able to spot the warbler.
|Kirtland's Warbler in its preferred habitat|
We also looked for Upland Sandpipers but dipped on them. Another pretty cool thing was finding a Vesper Sparrow nest located 10" off the trail where we were standing.
|Young Vesper Sparrows in nest|
Once the eggs are laid the females never leave the nest. The males do all the hunting and bring the food to the nest site to feed the female and the young.
|Male with food in it's bill.|